Governing legislation and other statutory requirements

The Health Research Board is an autonomous statutory agency set up under the Health Research Board (Establishment) Order 1986 (S.I. No. 279 of 1986), as amended (the “Acts”). The functions of the Health Research Board are to: 

  • promote, assist, commission or conduct health research to improve health and increase the effectiveness of the health services 
  • maintain, develop or support health information systems for the purposes of research and to provide the evidence for health policy and services
  • liaise and cooperate with other research bodies in the State and outside the State in the promotion, commissioning or conduct of relevant research
  • liaise with other health information bodies in the State and, where appropriate, outside the State in the development and support of health information systems.

In addition to its own governing legislation, the Health Research Board is also required to comply with a range of other statutory (national and EU) and administrative requirements. In particular, but not limited to, it has put in place procedures to ensure compliance with the following specific requirements:

We comply with the following legislation.

In accordance with Article 13 of the Acts, members of the Board, members of committees and award selection/evaluation panels as well as Health Research Board staff are required to disclose pecuniary or other beneficial interests in, or material to, any matter which falls to be considered by the Health Research Board, and to exclude themselves from the decision-making process.
In accordance with the provisions of the Ethics in Public Office Act, 1995 and the Standards in Public Office Act, 2001, all Health Research Board members and staff holding designated positions have provided statements of interest, and the Health Research Board maintains a Register of Board and Committee Members’ Interests.

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The Health Research Board is a prescribed body under the Freedom of Information Act. This Act provides a legal right to individuals to obtain access to information held by public bodies, to the greatest possible extent, consistent with the public interest and the right to privacy. However, the Act provides strong protections for individuals or research teams who supply information to the Health Research Board that is confidential, commercially sensitive or personal. Requests for information under this legislation should be addressed to the Freedom of Information Officer, Health Research Board, Grattan House, 67–72 Lower Mount Street, Dublin 2.

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The Health Research Board is committed to a policy of protecting the rights and privacy of individuals in accordance with data protection legislation.

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The Health Research Board, in compliance with its obligations under this Act, makes all documents produced available in the Irish language, on request.

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The Health Research Board is committed to a policy of equal opportunities, and it strives to be an employer where individual contributions are encouraged, and differences are valued. To this end, the HRB is committed to ensuring that no staff member, or applicant for employment, receives less favourable treatment than any other on grounds of gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, membership of the Traveller community, or any other grounds that are not relevant to good employment practice.

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The Health Research Board complies with the regulations on the Re-use of Public Sector Information (European Communities (Re-Use of Public Sector Information) Regulations 2005 (S.I. No. 279/2005)) and encourages the re-use of the information that it produces.

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The Health Research Board continues to take appropriate measures to protect the safety, health and welfare of all employees and visitors within its offices in order to meet the provisions of this Act, and it has taken steps to communicate both the rights and obligations of employers and employees under the Act.

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The Health Research Board is required to comply with the Disability Act, 2005. The Act places obligations on public sector employers to meet the target of ensuring that at least 3% of their workforce comprises people with disabilities, and that they report on an annual basis in relation to the numbers of people with disabilities in their employment and the measures they are taking to employ people with disabilities.

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The Health Research Board is required to adhere to the measures set out in the Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Acts 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2013. The Health Research Board has implemented all measures required by the aforementioned legislation.

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There were no protected disclosures made to the Health Research Board in 2016.

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The Health Research Board applies national rules and EU public procurement Directives to the purchase of goods and services. Where practicable, the Health Research Board avails of framework agreements put in place by the National Procurement Service.

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The Health Research Board comes under the remit of the Prompt Payment of Accounts Act, 1997, SI 383/2000 and the European Communities (Late Payment in Commercial Transactions) Regulations 2012, and it is committed to meeting its obligations under the 15-day Prompt Payment Rule, which came into effect on 2 January 1998. It has processes in place to track all invoices, and weekly payment runs are carried out, in order to ensure prompt payment.

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